Bars & Clubs 2011

Palo Alto

Rudys Pub BOTTLE TESTED AND READY: At Rudy's Pub, bartenders Savan Ipantz (left) and Travis Brown put every digit to work. Photograph by Albert Bracamonte III

Antonio's Nut House

321 S. California Ave., Palo Alto; 650.321.2550. The air hockey, foosball and pool tables make this a popular after-work spot for Facebook and Groupon empoyees.

British Bankers Club

1090 El Camino Real, Menlo Park; 650.327.8769. Housed in a turn-of-the-century building, British Bankers Club is a destination for dedicated alcohol connoisseurs. Features DJ sounds from Latin to European House, plus piano jazz some Fridays.

Deseo Tequila

851 Main St., Redwood City; 650.366.1333. The wall behind the bar section of this high-ceiling lounge is lined with hundreds of different tequilas. An adjoining room serves as a dance hall where live DJs pump Latin beats.

Empire Grill and Tap Room

651 Emerson St., Palo Alto; 650.321.3030. Born during the Internet boom and now drinking its way through the social media bubble, Empire Tap Room a Palo Alto institution.

Gordon Biersch

640 Emerson St., Palo Alto; 650.323.7723. A longtime staple for brew lovers.

The Hanky Panky

2651 El Camino Real, Redwood City; 650.366.4031. An adult club with full bar, low lights and big-screen TVs.

Illusions Supper Club

260 S. California Ave., Palo Alto; 650.321.6447. Live DJs spin electronica and hip-hop for younger crowds on the weekends.

La Bodeguita del Medio

463 California Ave., Palo Alto; 650.326.7762. Part Cuban restaurant, part cigar lounge, the rear portion boasts a smoking lounge and a walk-in humidor.

Lavanda Restaurant & Wine Bar

185 University Ave., Palo Alto; 650.321.3514. An upscale bar and restaurant with a courtyard that features New Orleans food and architecture. Jazz performers on the weekends.

Martins West

831 Main St., Redwood City; 650.366.4366. A casual dining place that serves quality Scottish dishes; the 80-plus whiskeys bring in experienced drinkers.

Old Pro

541 Ramona St., Palo Alto; 650.326.1446. Not to mention a mechanical bull.

Rose and Crown Pub

547 Emerson St., Palo Alto; 650.327.7673. Young, casual crowds pack this British pub nightly. It serves more than 120 types of beer, and attracts students and tech types.

Rudy's Pub at Elbe Restaurant

117 University Ave., Palo Alto; 650.329.0922. Dark and loud, Rudy's brings in locals and the Stanford crowd.


548 Emerson St., Palo Alto; 650.561.4929. A small, casual bar mostly for locals. DJs on occasion.

Trader Vic's

4269 El Camino Real, Palo Alto; 650.849.9800. The tiki tradition lives on in this edition of the franchise, complete with a Mai Tai Lounge.